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April 13, 2018

Astronaut training app could earn you a real-life trip into space

by John_A

Space Nation

Here in 2018, there are a bonkers number of different fitness apps. Some let you drill down to receive mind-boggling amounts of data about your fitness levels. Others boast a sarcastic A.I. leading you through your workout. Still others promise to scare you fit by plunging you into an immersive zombie apocalypse scenario. One of the latest boasts a new hook that we’ve never come across before: It’ll help you train like an astronaut.

Oh, and if you’re particularly good at it, its creators might even send you into space for real!

Created by Finnish startup Space Nation, the Space Nation Navigator app for Android (an iOS version is reportedly in the works) features a range of boot camp-style fitness training regimes, alongside quizzes and even a narrative adventure element. These are designed to test and train not just users’ physical abilities, but also their cognitive and social skills — such as problem-solving or managing a crisis.

Trainees collect points to reach increasingly difficult levels, with the potential of winning prizes at assorted milestones in the program. After three 12-week cycles, around 100 trainees from all over the world will be selected to participate in a real-life training camp. Of these 100, a dozen will then be invited to participate in a more intensive 10-week astronaut training camp in Iceland, which will be filmed and broadcast. The winning person gets an expenses-paid trip to the stars.

“Space Nation itself does not run any rockets or spaceships,” Mazdak Nassir, CCO and co-founder of Space Nation, told Digital Trends. “Instead, we collaborate with a number of space companies, several of which are expected to launch their first commercial space flight at the end of this year or in 2019. The selected candidate that will go as the first Space Nation Astronaut to space will travel with one of those spaceships. Which one the astronaut will travel with will be decided later as we see which companies actually deliver. The first flight in 2019 will be suborbital, with the aim to send the first Space Nation astronaut to the International Space Station in 2020.”

The app’s launch (no pun intended) coincides with the first human space flight on April 12, 1961, by Soviet cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin. If you’re interested in cementing your own space travel legacy, you can download the Space Nation Navigator app through the Google Play Store.


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